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Blogging -- or Web logging -- most often is thought of as an activity for high school students.
Did you know, however, that students as young as kindergarten age now blog on a daily basis in a variety of exciting ways? Read on to find out how elementary blogging works, what topics elementary students and teachers cover in their blogs, which software programs and tools to consider, and cautions and tips for starting your own blog.
More than two-dozen links to blogging software and to elementary blogs across the United States. At its core, blogging -- or Web logging -- is a method of online journaling.
Take a look at any blog and you'll immediately see the connection between it and a traditional diary. Often arranged in calendar format with the most recent post first, blogs contain rantings, wishes, commentary and anything else a writer thinks about, often with graphics and perhaps even with audio and video elements.
As David Warlick points out on his Web sitehowever, the blog has evolved rapidly into something more: A blog is a Web-publishing concept that enables anyone -- first graders, political pundits, homeless people, high school principals, presidential candidates -- to publish information on the Internet.
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A blog a shortening of weB LOG has become a journalistic tool, a way to publish news, ideas, rants, announcements, and ponderings very quickly, and without technical, editorial, and time constraints. It essentially makes anyone a columnist. In fact, many established columnists now publish their own blogs.
Blogs, because of their ease of use, and because of the context of news and editorial column writing, have become a highly effective way to help students to become better writers. Research has long shown that students write more, write in greater detail, and take greater care with spelling, grammar, and punctuation, when they are writing to an authentic audience over the Internet.
One Teacher's Experience Want to hear how blogging really works? In it, Brenda describes her reasons for using blogs, suggests steps for getting started, offers student feedback, provides a rubric she uses to evaluate student blogs, and recommends links to more information.
Educators know that students write better when they have a real audience -- not just a teacher with a red pen. In the past, finding such an audience was a challenge. But with Internet access and some basic software, any student can write for the world to see.
Although blogging in schools is still in its infancy, anecdotal evidence suggests that students' interest in, and quantity of, writing increases when their work is published online and -- perhaps even more importantly -- when it is subject to reader comments.
So, what do students in grades K-6 blog about? In its blog, Mr. Brune's 4th grade class at Mamaroneck Avenue School in Mamaroneck, New York, created an online commentary on today's news stories.Automatic works cited and bibliography formatting for MLA, APA and Chicago/Turabian citation styles.
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